An Improvement to Woodpole Construction

In December 2019 there was a communication sent across Power T&D with regards to an incident that occurred during works undertaken by another Overhead Line contractor. During the construction of an H-Pole Structure, there was a requirement to lift the top end of the structure with an excavator approximately 200mm to allow bolts associated with the steel work to be tightened.

Whilst lowering the H Pole structure down, the bottom end slipped from the wooden blocks it was supported on and struck 2 of the employees resulting in both employees suffering fractures to their lower right legs. No securing or restraint measures were applied to prevent movement of the H pole structure

After this communication spreading throughout the Beauly – Keith 132kV Overhead Line Refurbishment project, a member of the team recognised the need to improve the base for the woodpoles while dressing them.

The base the structures are constructed on are typically made up from wooden blocks which provides little to no security of the poles when on uneven ground, which was part of the reason for the incident that occurred. A design was created that securely supports the wood pole (due to the raised edge and wire mesh base for extra friction) allowing for steelwork to be added easily. These stools also have the added benefit for work to be at waist height improving posture of anyone working on the structures. They were trialled on the job and received great feedback from the operatives who were using them. T

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Entry submitted by Balfour Beatty

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